Wowed, amazed, enjoyable and probably the best Pepsi Grandstand show I’ve seen in a long time, the Newsboys went all out Thursday night at the Missouri State Fair.
Since this was a Christian concert, no there were no beer hawkers making their rounds. No audience members trying to balance a much too-full beer over their fellow concert-goers while climbing over bleachers. Let’s just say no one needed beer to enjoy this upbeat God-themed show. The Newsboys stood on their own merit.
The concert was family-friendly, age-friendly and spanned great, loud rock music with words you could hear and understand at the same time. One spectator remarked “wow I think they are louder than last year’s Def Leppard concert!”
Democrat columnist Travis McMullen expressed his disappointment with the John Kay & Steppenwolf concert last Saturday, and he noted his surprise at the band Foghat.
“Foghat came onto the stage with even less fog than I was expecting based on their name,” he said. “I saw vapers in the crowd making more impact.”
Well Travis, the Newsboys had a little more fog-effect than Foghat, but their message certainly wasn’t foggy. Lead singer Michael Tait, not only left the audience energized with the group’s music, but he also expounded on their support of the men and women in blue. He talked about the recent rash of officer shootings.
“All lives matter!” Tait shouted to concert goers.
In between songs Tait mentioned the “debacle” of the presidential race and said when things are spinning out of our control, the only thing left to do is pray.
Tait, who is black, said his father brought him up in the deep south and he could have instilled into him a hatred for others, but he didn’t.
“Color doesn’t hate, people do,” he said.
Tait even walked all over ISIS, citing the recent, increasing incidents of terrorist related shootings and bombings all over the world. With all of this in mind he directed the crowd to trust in God and pray.
During the few quiet moments in the concert some audience members showed their support for the band by yelling out “we love you!” Signs were also lifted up with sayings such as “I am the Newsboys,” and “God’s not dead.” During high octane songs like “Crazy,” “Jesus Freak” and “God’s Not Dead,” the audience was on their feet, arms waving.
One of the most memorable moments of the concert was drummer Duncan Phillips. Phillips was already positioned above the other band members on a raised platform.
During one song the group pulled out all stops and Phillip’s drum platform began to rise, and if that was sufficient the whole platform went vertical. He never missed a beat. To the crowd’s amazement the vertical platform still containing Phillips and the drums began to spin. Phillips never stopped playing. I think the whole vertical-spin only energized this awesome drummer.
I’d always heard of the Newsboys, but had never listened to their music or been to a concert before. Now, I can’t wait until they come back.
Faith Bemiss can be reached at 530-0289 or @flbemiss.